French? The World Wide Web is French?

Tim Berners-Lee, British, worked at CERN in Switzerland, but his actual office was technically in France. Champagne, anyone?

Kudos to David Galbraith, Yelp co-founder, and his post from July 2010 that was updated and got noticed yesterday. After visiting CERN, Galbraith asked Berners-Lee about the exact room where he worked, and the first World Wide Web server ran. Turns out those rooms are just a meter or two across the border into France. Seems all these places should be some type of Web shrine, right? CERN has plaques about the development of the Web, but the rooms are still in general use.

As Galbraith mentions, the fact that the Web, "an invention which breaks down physical borders," was been created in a confusing mix of locations that can't be tied to any real country is "delightfully appropriate." Adding more international flavor, the current occupant of the room is a Polish software engineer. Work goes on, history or not.

Too funny

Come on guys. We already have so little to brag about in Switzerland. And now you gotta take that away from us ? Tears…

AlpTkz on

The room number is 31-2012. This isn’t some Mayan apocalypse in joke is it?

Gold on

Note the series of tubes on the ceiling. Those played a critical role, I understand.

Cell Phone Tracking Blog on


Wrong continent. Where was Vint Cerf?

Jack on

It's somewhat funny (but also convenient) that we use Swiss electricity plugs, and Swiss cell-phone network coverage all over CERN.

espinchi on

This is irrelevant, SIR TIM BERNERS-LEE was BRITISH. Who cares where he happened to be working at the time.

Prosper0 on

The Web was invented as part of an international scientific effort, there's no need and usefulness to link it to one flowerpot over another.

AceJohnny2 on

Genius strikes wherever

That hallway has all the charm of the steerage on a tramp steamer. We’ve come to an age when history is made in tin corridors—though Dickson’s room at Menlo Park was rather dreary (or is now). I suppose Gutenberg’s workshop would’ve been filthy and smelt of metals and sulphur …

F. Lagnab on

My friend is working in the very office where Berners-Lee made his server, it’s not that impressive irl, pretty uninspiring really… Also, it’s always fun walking over the road to the restaurant to know you’ve just crossed a border.

sephiap on

Take a stand: is the Web Swiss, French, or transcendent?

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